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China’s Baidu takes its AI dilemma the smart TV route

Eyebrows are almost always raised when giants of internet and software make hardware investments. An exception to the rule happened towards the end of last week, with Baidu investing $158 million into Chinese electronics maker Skyworth Digital’s smart TV sector. What makes this stand out is the investment supposedly has a core focus on artificial intelligence rather than the TV, set top and WiFi gateway businesses Skyworth is better known for. By AI, Baidu really means voice-powered intelligence embedded into smart TVs via its own DuerOS, as China’s largest online search engine once more strengthens its position to get a foothold in a voice market which some have suggested is more competitive than the US and Europe combined. DuerOS is…

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